Friday, July 29, 2016

Zoo News Digest 29th July 2016 (ZooNews 933)

Zoo News Digest 29th July 2016 
(ZooNews 933)

Peter Dickinson

Dear Colleague,

It was stupid yes, but it was also very sad. One woman killed and the other severely injured by tigers at the Badaling Wildlife World in China. I don't suppose we will ever know what the truth of the story was. Did they really believe they were out of tiger area? Did hotheadness take over and sense fly out of the window? Whatever I really don't think that these women deserved all the horrible remarks leveled at them on the various Facebook groups. In fact the older woman (who died) deserves praise and accolade in getting out of the car to try and save her daughter. What would you have done? Honestly? There is no way that I could have sat by and watched someone I loved being attacked. I too would have got out of the car and tried to help with full knowledge of what may happen. So I say a huge respect to that woman.

The death of the small girl in Rabat Zoo appears to have been a terrible accident and I hope that is just what it was but that the zoo does take some responsibility. I recollect an elephant in a zoo I worked in that, for no good reason, took a particular dislike to me. It had the ability to throw rocks at me with unerring accuracy at distances of over a hundred yards. Happily it had days when I was considered not worth the effort.

The Dartmoor Zoo Story has taken a new twist as has the saga of the South Lakes Safari Zoo. I continue to wonder just what will happen next.

First mention of VinPearl Safari on Phu Quoc Island in a while….if I don't count the posing pictures with the tiger cubs (there's a story there if you read between the lines). Here they list newly imported animals includes chimpanzees. There is a great deal about this collection which bothers me so I have to ask, where did the chimpanzees come from? Which zoo were they captive bred in? Would I be wrong in thinking that they are babies brought in from the wild? Would I? I am quite prepared to say sorry if that is not the case.

Why do I persist in drawing attention to the posing sessions with Orangutans in Taman Safari in each Zoo News Digest mail out? Well in the first place because it is wrong and secondly because I know they see it and it annoys the hell out of them. It isn't clever and it isn't a joke and now we have Ark Avilon Zoo in the Philippines doing the same thing. This is very sad because Ark Avilon is one of the best zoos in the Philippines and so will now be copied by the other outstandingly crap collections there. It goes on everywhere in Asia but it isn't acceptable and there are no reasonable excuses. It disgusts me that such practices are not condemned by SEAZA and other zoo bodies. It is as if they do not give a damn….perhaps they don't.

Did You Know?
ZooNews Digest has over 25,500 'Like's' on Facebook and has a weekly reach often exceeding over 250,000 people? That ZooNews Digest has subscribers in over 800 Zoos in 153+ countries? That the subscriber list reads like a 'Zoos Who's Who?'
If you are a subscriber to the email version then you probably knew this already. You would also know that ZooNews Digest pre-dates any of the others. It was there before FaceBook. It was there shortly after the internet became popular and was a 'Blog' before the word had been invented. ZooNews Digest reaches zoo people.

I remain committed to the work of GOOD zoos, 


Charging RHINOS smash into family's car in West Midland Safari Park terror
A dad told of his terror after a pair of RHINOS charged his family’s car as his two young daughters sat in the back.

Stuart Hall’s girls, four-year-old Alexi and Isabella, nine, screamed out as the massive beasts – which can weigh up to two tonnes – careered into their Volvo as they fought.

Isabella, was sent flying by the impact at West Midland Safari Park , near Bewdley in Worcestershire .

Suspected speed-breeding in tiger tourism industry
A “cruel” practice of speed-breeding cubs in Thailand’s tiger entertainment industry is suspected following a secret investigation by World Animal Protection.

It is already widely reported that tigers at many entertainment venues endure lifelong suffering, often chained and confined in barren cages and subjected to harsh training processes to perform for tourists.

But WAP claims its report – Tiger selfies exposed: a portrait of Thailand’s tiger entertainment industry – is the first comprehensive analysis of the business in Thailand.

Volume XXXI, Number 7
July 2016 
ISSN 0971-6378 (Print edition); 0973-2543 (Online edition); RNI 
Date of publication 27 July 2016

Thoughts for Behaviour: Species and individuals who prefer to flee… Where do you start?
You know this one animal, or these species who are extremely afraid of humans? In the marine mammal world, we do have these individuals who are more sensitive than others. In the zoo world we have many species who are afraid, or are flight animals by nature. With these animal’s reinforcement strategies work very different. This most likely because they value their behaviour of fleeing over what you decided to provide them after they did a good job. It’s up to the trainer to discover what is the best reinforcer for that particular specie, that individual and even the scenario

N. Korea completes construction of nature museum, remodeled zoo in Pyongyang
North Korea has completed the construction of a nature museum and remodeled a zoo in Pyongyang, the country's official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) reported Monday.

The KCNA said that an inaugural ceremony took place on Sunday and was attended by Premier Pak Pong-ju, along with Choe Thae-bok and O Su-yong, both vice chairmen of the Workers' Party Central Committee.

Pak said in an address that the successful construction of the Nature Museum and the Central Zoo was the "fruition of the wise leadership of Marshal Kim Jong-un who is devoting his all to the work for providing the people with the world-level base for cultural and leisure activities," according to the KCNA.

The news agency said the Nature Museum, covering more than 35,000 square meters, is a modern mass educational and science research center as well as a leisure complex. The museum has a Space Hall, Paleozoic Era Hall, Mesozoic Era Hall, Cenozoic Era Hall, Animals Hall, Plants Hall, Gifts Hall, E-Library and Sci-tech Disseminating Room, it said.

In regards to the zoo, more than 40 animal pens have been built for reptiles, monkeys and other wild animals to match the surrounding scenery, the KC

In Bojnice zoo, bear escapee was put to sleep
It was visitors themselves who pointed to the animal running loose, being separated from them by just a fence.

The animal – allegedly nameless as it arrived at Bojnice only about a month ago – aged 6 and coming from the Czech zoo in Tábor, was caught soon afterwards. Later, it turned out he was called Balú (after the bear in the Jungle Book) in Tábor, and never showed any signs of being aggressive.

Then, the reports on what happened differ: “A vet first used a tranquilizer gun, but without success; thus, we had to kill the animal – in the name of security of everyone,” Andrea Klasová of the Zoo’s marketing department told the Pravda daily, adding that the bear has been aggressiv

Orangutan Green Team guides buying land to protect Borneo's wildlife from palm oil threat
A small group of Indonesian tour guides are buying up forest lands in a bid to protect wildlife, including sun bears and orangutans, in the world's top palm oil-producing country.

With the help of money from tourists, the 28 local guides, known as the Orangutan Green Team, are buying land along the river opposite Kalimantan's Tanjung Puting National Park, in the heart of Borneo.

Leaving the port at Kumai, tourists board their traditional river boat or klotok, gliding through the wide river before turning down narrower dark brown r

Please stop this Ark Avilon isn't clever
How it Should be...see below!
See Here

Wolves are breeding rapidly across Europe. In central Greece, Adam Nicolson finds shepherds and conservationists at odds over how to deal with their incursions
t is not often that you see wildness erupting into a man’s life, but it happened in front of me. Sotiris Stamoulis, a shepherd who keeps his 300 breeding goats in the beautiful blond wood pasture of Mount Gerania outside Corinth in central Greece, was only 18 inches away from my face but shouting his distress and rage, a gale of frustration and worry blowing out of him.
Below the trees were the distant, wind-stirred waters of the Gulf of Corinth; beyond them the mountains of the Peloponnese. Warm resin and wild oregano drifted past on the wind. Even in the daytime, nightingales were above us singing broken snatches of their song. If you didn’t know otherwise, you might have thought this another Arcadia. But for the men who live and work here, it isn’t. This is one of Europe’s wolf frontiers – the Mount Gerania pack are the southernmost wolves in Europe. Stamoulis is point-man for a way of life under existential threat and for all his strong, straddled presence, anxiety rippled through every gesture he made.
“In the beginning four years ago, I was starting to lose some animals but I didn’t know why. I’d had trouble with dogs before, usually biting the goats on the legs. But this was different: whatever it was, they were going for the throats. There was no memory of wolves here. My father, my grandfather, both had been shepherds here but none had known them. Not even 200 years ago were there any wolves here.”

New virus strains found in hunters bitten by gorillas
Scientists from the Institut Pasteur and the CNRS have identified two new strains of the HTLV-4 virus in two hunters who were bitten by gorillas in Gabon. These findings, published in the journal Clinical Infectious Diseases, support the notion that gorillas represent a major source of infectious agents that can be passed on to humans.
Many of the viral pathogenic agents that have emerged in humans in recent decades are of animal origin – including SARS coronavirus, avian influenza virus, hantaviruses, Ebola virus, Marburg virus and Nipah virus. After the initial contact between species, some of these viruses used a variety of evolutionary mechanisms to adapt to their new human host. Scientists from the unité d’Epidémiologie et physiopathologie des virus oncogènes (Institut Pasteur/CNRS), directed by Antoine Gessain, are working on a group of RNA viruses known as HTLV retroviruses. In 2 to 8% of cases, HTLV type 1 resul

Mass killing of elephants: Will the EU go on turning a blind eye?
Every year, 30,000 elephants are killed for their tusks according to Fondation Franz Weber, a Swiss-based NGO campaigning against the ivory trade for over 40 years, writes Willy Fautre.

Willy Fautré is the Director of Human Rights Without Frontiers.

However, the EU continues to turn a deaf ear to the calls for a total ivory trade ban. On 1 July 2016, the European Commission decided that a global ivory trade ban did “not seem justified” and encouraged the Council to take a position against “a general closure of domestic ivory markets.”

This recommendation comes ahead of the 17th meeting of the Conference of the Parties (CoP17) to the 1976 Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), which will take place in South Africa from 24 September- 5 October and in which 182 member states of CITES will participate.

In 1978, the US Endangered Species Act classified the African Elephant as “threatened.” Since then, elephant populations have dropped to less than half of the number in 1978, falling by roughly 3% every year because of poaching, hunting and habitat destruction.

The EU is the largest exporter of legal ivory, and it is this trade that fuels the illegal trade in ivory, and the mass killing of elephants.

During the past decade, EU member states legally exported more than 20,000 carvings and 564 tusks to Asia. On the other hand, from 2011 to 2014, EU countries seized around 4,500 ivory items that were to be illegally exported to China, Hong Kong, and Vietnam. In these countries, ivory imports far exceed the number of official EU export certificates.

Consumption of ivory by China’s middle class pushe

Vol 8, No 7 (2016)

Manatees from Singapore zoo head to Caribbean in first repopulation scheme
Singapore’s zoo said yesterday that it will send two manatees to Guadeloupe as part of the world’s first repopulation programme for the animal, which became extinct on the French Caribbean island in the early 20th century.
Males Kai, seven, and Junior, six, will be the first manatees – also known as sea cows – on the island since the species died out.
Another 13 manatees of both genders from zoos around the world will follow the pair to the Grand Cul-de-Sac Marin, a 15,000 hectare (37,000 acre) protected bay, the Asian city-state’s zoo operator said.
Any offspring from the group will be reintroduced into the wild as part of the repopulation programme.
The species is listed as “vulnerable” on the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s Red List of Threatened Species, with the West Indian variety becoming extinct in the Caribbean due to overhunting.
During the 30-hour journey, the ma

Flying tigers over Vietnam with CV alive
Four endangered Indochinese tigers were transported from their origin in the Czech Republic to Luxembourg and then onwards to a new home in Vietnam by Cargolux for exhibition in the Hanoi Zoo.

The tigers were carried on a Cargolux 747 freighter via “CV alive,” the carrier’s live cargo transportation service. Over the years, Cargolux has transported a wide range of exotic animals, including giraffes, alpacas, white tigers and white rhinos. In this instance, the tigers were kept in a carefully ventilated and temperature-controlled environment that the airline says can replicate any natural environment from 4˚C to 29˚C.

With fewer than 350 animals in this extremely rare subspecies currently alive in the wilderness of Southeast Asia, and another 20 registered in captivity, the endangered Indochinese tiger population has been diminished by protracted regional conflicts in the past. More recently, the population has been reduced by 70 percent by urbanization and agricultural activity in the last decade, according to the World Wildlife Fund.

The Hanoi Zoo today has a tiger breeding program to help save the animals from extinction, but the zoo had come under scrutiny in 2008 when it had admitted to illegall

Gorillas in Democratic Republic of Congo Have Strong Connection to Metro Detroit
The executive director of the Democratic Republic of Congo-based Gorilla Rehabilitation and Conservation Education Center, or GRACE, will speak next month at an event organized by the Detroit Zoological Society, one of its partners in the worldwide effort to save the highly endangered Grauer's gorilla, formerly known as the eastern lowland gorilla.

Dr. Sonya M. Kahlenberg will speak at 6 p.m. on Sunday, Aug. 14, in the Ford Education Center at the Detroit Zoo. The presentation — titled “Saving Gorillas from Extinction” — is open to the public at a cost of $25, with all proceeds benefiting GRACE.

GRACE is the only facility in the world that provides rescue and rehabilitative care for orphaned Grauer's gorillas – considered one of the world’s most endangered primates. The organization was founded in 2009 by the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International and is now led by a board of directors chaired by DZS

The San Diego Zoo's panda interpreter
The sign at the beginning of Panda Trek at the San Diego Zoo says the wait is 35 to 40 minutes. Might be nice to have something that will help pass the time.

That’s where Kay Ferguson comes in.

She’s a panda interpreter, and from her chair in one corner of the exhibit, she speaks through a microphone to give visitors information about the popular black and white bears: what they eat, what they weigh, how old they are when they first start climbing. Even how often they poop.

Ferguson has been doing this for about 20 years, in shifts that last four to six hours, and she knows the pandas so well that when Xiao Liwu begins to settle in for a nap in a tree, she calls out his moves before he does them.

“Put the paws up,” she says, and Xiao Liwu does, onto a branch.

“Get one more picture before he turns around,” she tells the visitors, just as Xiao Liwu rises up and shifts position.

If Ferguson’s wardrobe is any indication, she loves her work. She’s wearing panda earrings, panda socks, a panda pendant. Her purse and cellphone case have pandas on them.

The Lemon Grove resident is 76 and has no plans t

Phu Quoc Island’s Safari Zoo welcomes more species
After six months of operation, Vinpearl Safari, a wildlife park off the southern province of Kien Giang, has successfully bred more rare species.
The Vinpearl Safari park, covering 500 hectares of the province’s Phu Quoc Island, has added a number of new species to its brood, including antelopes, servals, kangaroos, peacocks, and pheasants.
Early last month, two Bengal tigers gave birth to four pups.
Le Hong Nhat, head of the animal care group at Vinpearl Safari, said that two months after their birth, the baby tigers’ weight had increased to between 5 and 7 kilograms from 0.7 kilograms at delivery.
According to Vietnamese realty conglomerate Vingroup, the safari’s management unit, Vinpearl Safari will eventually house and protect more than 2,000 animals of 140 different species.
The list of animals there includes common waterbucks, striped hyena, royal pythons, chacma baboons, bat-eared foxes, common elands, greater kudus, gemsboks, dromedarie


 Shock twist as Dalton zoo founder David Gill and his wife reappointed as sole directors and four bosses 'terminated'
SOUTH Lakes Safari Zoo founder David Gill and his wife have been reappointed as sole directors of the zoo - with the four new directors being terminated from their positions.

In a strange twist, despite vowing that Mr Gill would no longer be involved in the running of the zoo at a formal licensing meeting just three weeks ago, the company has yesterday terminated the four directors and reappointed Mr Gill and his wife Frieda Rivera-Schreiber.

The previous four directors - Karen Brewer, Jayne Birkett, Claire Lambert and Stewart Lambert have all been terminated. Mrs Brewer had been head of the new management structure appointed to take over the running of the zoo to comply with inspectors' and Barrow Borough Council's concerns about Mr Gill.

The Evening Mail understands that Barrow Borough Council is aware of the change in directors.

Barrow Borough Council rejected an application to the renew the licence of South Lakes Safari Zoo over health and safety and management concerns.

South Lakes Safari Zoo applied to renew its licence in January 2016 but Barrow Borough Council have been forced to consider whether or not the attraction can be allowed to stay open after concerns relating to its owner, David Gill.

The council decided to reject Mr Gill's application but the zoo now has six months to reapply in its own right. It will stay open during this time.

On the first day of the hearing, July 5, in a text message sent

Massive flock of egrets causing problems at Kansas zoo
Officials at a Kansas zoo say a flock of nearly 5,000 egrets are causing problems.

The Wichita Eagle ( ) reports that the federally protected birds have taken up residence in a corner of the Sedgwick County Zoo in Wichita.

Zoo bird curator Scott Newland says he's been dealing with the flock for about two years and that eggs, chicks and nesting twigs have been falling onto public pathways and into animal exhibits. Newland says it's posing a risk to animals. The egrets moved to the zoo after their rookery was torn down in November 2014 to make way for duplexes.

The egrets have mostly been concentrated in a three-acre area on the southeast corner of the zoo.

"It's a public health concern, it's also a health concern with our animals," Newland said. "It's not ideal for these birds to be nesting over our exhibits, nesting over our animals. So that's been the biggest headache."

The zoo has devoted more than 500 hours and $50,000 to keep the birds under control. Newland says that a zoo keeper could remove 10 wheelbarrows full of waste and fallen twigs on any given day due to the egrets. Due to the mess, the wolves at the zoo have been off exhibit since mid-May.

The zoo has had a depredation permit, which allows it to scare away, capture or kill birds if necessary for health and safety.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services representative Steve Sepin said the government will allow the killing of birds in fire situations after other steps hav

Mysterious New Whale Species Discovered in Alaska
Like many good mysteries, this one started with a corpse, but the body in question was 24 feet (7.3 meters) long.

The remains floated ashore in June of 2014, in the Pribilof Islands community of St. George, a tiny oasis of rock and grass in the middle of Alaska's Bering Sea. A young biology teacher spotted the carcass half-buried in sand on a desolate windswept beach. He alerted a former fur seal researcher who presumed, at first, that she knew what they'd found: a Baird's beaked whale, a large, gray, deep-diving creature that occasionally washes in dead with the tide.

But a closer examination later show

SeaWorld's Middle Eastern expansion will not include orcas, says CEO
SeaWorld’s first attraction outside of North America will also be its first not to include killer whales, Attractions Management can exclusively reveal.

The company, which pledged its current generation of orcas would be its last in captivity earlier this year, has firmed up plans for a Middle Eastern expansion – rumoured to be coming to either Abu Dhabi or Saudi Arabia.

“We have moved to a definitive agreement stage, money has changed hands and we’re currently designing the park, but we haven’t made a public announcement of where and who – something we hope to to in the fall,” said SeaWorld CEO Joel Manby, speaking to Attractions Management.

Under Manby’s stewardship, SeaWorld has spent the last year-and-a-half redefining itself as a park that cares and one that wants to create memorable experiences.

Manby first announced progress in SeaWorld’s global expansion plans during a call regarding the company’s annual earnings report, saying the company had “moved to the next phase” of its international development strategy by signing an MoU with a Middle Eastern partner.

When SeaWorld announced the end to orca breeding at its parks, no mention was made of its planned expansion, only that the whales would “live out their lives at the company's park habitats”.

The move signals a new phase in the life of SeaWorld, with plans for a broader entertainment mix to replace its iconic orcas.

“Things are certainly progressing and it will be the first SeaWorld attraction ever to not have a killer whale facility,” Manby said. “W


Wildlife park may not be held legally responsible for deadly attack, DOESN'T put tigers to death
On Saturday, tigers at Beijing's Badaling Wildlife Park mauled two women after they exited their car inside the safari zone, killing one on the spot and seriously injuring the other. Legal experts say that the park will not bear liability for the attack if it can prove that it fulfilled its obligations of warning and protecting visitors.
The incident happened after a family drove inside the Siberian tigers' enclosure as part of a safari-style tour. The husband of the injured woman claimed that she did not realize that they were inside the enclosure when she got out of the car. Netizens speculate that he may have said this to place blame on the park.
When a visitor is hurt in any zoo, the legal liability goes first to the zoo, according to Chang Sha, a lawyer from the King & Capital Law Firm. However, if the zoo can prove that its facilities were not flawed and the staff fulfilled all obligations of warning visitors against dangerous beh

Orangutan learns to mimic human conversation for the first time
An orangutan has shown an ability to emulate human speech for the first time — a feat that gets us closer to understanding how human speech first evolved from the communications of ancestral great apes.

‘Rocky’ the ginger ape has astonished experts by producing sounds similar to words in a “conversational context”.

“This opens up the potential for us to learn more about the vocal capacities of early hominids that lived before the split between the orangutan and human lineages to see how the vocal system evolved towards full-blown speech in humans,” says lead researcher Adriano Lameria, from the University of Durham, UK.

Playing the game

His team conducted a game in which the ape mimicked the pitch and tone of human sounds and made vowel-like calls.

Comparing his sounds against a large database of recordings of wild and captive orangutans showed they were markedly different.

Rocky was able to learn new sounds and control the action of his voice in the way humans do when they conduct a conversation, the scientists concluded.

“Instead of learning new sounds, it has been presumed that sounds made by great apes are driven by arousal over which they have no control,” says Lameria. “But our research pr

Fatal Tiger Mauling Shows What's Wrong With Animal Parks
Surveillance video at a wildlife park in northern China shows the horrifying moment a woman is attacked by a captive tiger. The woman survived, but her mother was killed after she rushed to defend her daughter.

The woman's husband also came to his wife's rescue and was not hurt.

The deadly encounter took place Saturday at Badaling Wildlife World outside Beijing. Yet the incident could have been prevented and is a reminder of the danger—and questionable track record—of such captive animal experiences, says Luke Dollar, a conservation biologist who directs National Geographic's Big Cats Initiative.

"Lack of awareness and lack of respect for wild animals can sometimes be very expensive, and unfortunately it cost a woman her life," Dollar says.

John Goodrich, the senior program director fo

Bronx Zoo breeds a little penguin for first time in 120-year history
 New York City's Bronx Zoo has bred a little penguin for the first time in its 120-year history.

The zoo is now exhibiting the chick , which can be seen on its YouTube channel. The chick hatched on May 10.

Zoo animals are starving to death at Venezuela's zoos
Venezuela is no stranger to crisis. In recent years, the South American country has been on the brink of economic collapse.

A drastic fall in oil prices, which provides almost all of Venezuela's foreign income, has been followed by a severe recession and widespread food and medicine shortages.

For Venezuelans, the scarcity has led to choosing between waiting in hours-long lines for basic food supplies or succumbing to sky-high prices on the black market.

That scarcity has now spread to Venezuela's zoos, where food shortages have left some animals emaciated or even dying.

Rabat Zoo Seems to Deny Responsibility over Death of Child
The Rabat Zoo has denied responsibility for a young girl’s death on Tuesday after an elephant threw a stone out of its enclosure that struck her on the head.

The official statement from the zoo today noted that the elephant enclosure met all international standards. It asserted: “Accidents of this type are rare, unforeseeable, and unusual. Accidents of this nature happened in international zoos, most recently in Disney World Orlando and the Cincinnati Zoo in the United States.”

A video posted by Jadid24/7 depicts the girl receiving medical care from passerby and a man who appears to be in uniform. However, the commentator of the video notes that the accident had occurred over five minutes ago and an ambulance had still not arrived.

A commenter on the video expressed his outrage at the zoo’s handling of the case. “Primarily responsible for this tragedy is the director of the Rabat Zoo. How is it possible that the place receives a large number of

DNA Study Reveals the One and Only Wolf Species in North America

SeaWorld San Diego drops lawsuit over breeding ban
SeaWorld San Diego has dropped a lawsuit against the California Coastal Commission that challenged the agency’s right to impose a ban on the breeding of killer whales at the theme park.

SeaWorld, facing pressure from animal-rights groups and others, announced in March that it would no longer breed its captive orcas.

“Fantastic news,” Coastal Commission Vice Chair Dayna Bochco said of the decision to drop the lawsuit filed in the Superior Court of California in San Diego. “This finally closes the chapter on captive orca breeding in California.”

SeaWorld and the Coastal Commission clashed when the theme park applied with the state agency to expand its orca holding tanks, saying it wanted to give the whales more room to swim and create a new opportunity for research.

The state agency approved the project in October but added the condition that SeaWorld stop breeding its whales. The conditio

Former Dartmoor Zoo owners accuse current boss of destroying their legacy
The family who once ran Dartmoor Zoo have launched a scathing attack on its current owner, accusing him of destroying their legacy.

Ben Mee bought Dartmoor Zoo from the Daw family in 2006 after they had owned it for 36 years.

But Lynne Daw, aged 64, who ran it with her former husband Ellis, says she is distraught at how he has run things – and were devastated he had let a big cat escape from the grounds.

They have also accused Mr Mee of neglecting the health and safety of the animals in lieu of promoting himself.

Construction of large zoo in Yekaterinburg to begin in 2018
The investor plans to begin construction of a new zoon in the Russian city of Yekaterinburg in 2018.

Within the first phase, the construction site will occupy an area of 34,7 hectares in the Novokoltsovsky micro-district located near the “Yekaterinburg-Expo” exhibition center, the local media reports on Thursday.

Erection of the first phase of the zoo is planned to be completed by celebrations on the occasion of the 300 years anniversary of Yekaterinburg that will be held in 2023.

Animals in the zoo will be represented in accordance with the continents, where they inhabit: Asia, North America, South America, Africa, Australia, Antarctica.

The second phase envisages the creation of a scientific and

Close all tiger farms, WWF tells Asian states
The World Wildlife Fund on Thursday called on Asian states to close their tiger farms to boost the fight against the black-market trade in animal parts.
The conservation group said there remained 200 tiger farms in Asia, mostly in China, Laos, Vietnam and Thailand.

The tiger population in farms is about 8,000, more than the estimated 3,900 living in the wild, WWF said in a statement ahead of the July 29 International Day of the Tiger.

Many tiger farms have been implicated in the hugely lucrative but illegal trafficking market.

The so-called "Temple of Tigers" in western Thailand was closed in May after Thai wildlife officials discovered dozens of dead cubs inside a freezer.

The universal closure of such farms was crucial, WWF said, because

Let’s talk today about how important it is to fact-check major publications in the realm of animal media before sharing any information they present. Specifically, let’s talk about why The Dodo is never a source on animal related issues to be trusted, because of the misinformation they perpetuate and the directly harmful ideas they propagate. Dodo articles are rife with misinformation, twisted presentations of facts, quotes from purported ‘experts’ who are well known to be biased and unreliable sources, have non-existent primary citations, and in many cases are just egregiously incorrect about things that can simply be googled.

Today, a new article showed up that I was hoping would be a valid source of information: How To Tell if An Animal Sanctuary is a ‘Fake’. It is, sadly, just as egregiously not fact-checked as everything else animal related The Dodo has produced - and what’s worse is that the incorrect information it presents is mixed in with other really valid and important points for interpreting the quality of a sanctuary. Before we break down why it’s so infuriating, let’s look at the way Dodo articles are produced in general.

Zoo workers stage protest
Alleging partiality in extending work permit for tour vehicle operators inside the Arignar Anna Zoological Park, Vandalur, workers and staff staged a protest in front of the Zoo Director’s office on Thursday.

More than 150 tourist drivers, including selection grade and special grade staff, are working in the zoo for more than 25 years.

“We have been asked to submit our documents before Wednesday,” said Iraniyappan, secretary, AAZP Staff and Workers Union.

The union was demanding extension of their work permit and upgradation of animal maintenance as well.

The protesting workers sought an appointment with Zoo Director, KSSVP Reddy, who will be retiring on July 31.

Mr. Iraniyappan said they would be fo

Guangzhou aquarium denies 'world's saddest polar bear' is sad, 500,000 sign petition calling for its release
The Grandview Aquarium, located inside a sprawling shopping mall in Guangzhou, has become notorious for its questionable treatment of its animals, in particular one very sad-looking polar bear named Pizza.

International Tiger Day
International Tiger Day is sometimes termed Global Tiger Day. It takes place each year on the 29th July. A relatively new celebration it was first initiated in St. Petersburg in 2010. As the name suggests this is a worldwide event.

The primary aim of International Tiger Day is to draw the worlds attention to the plight which tigers face in the wild AND in captivity.

This year both Good Zoos and Bad Zoos will be hosting events to raise money for Tiger Conservation in the wild. Some Bad Zoos will pocket the cash or use it for their own personal Tiger schemes. Other Bad Zoos may hand all of the money over to genuine conser

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New Meetings and Conferences updated Here

If you have anything to add then please email me at
I will include it when I get a minute. You know it makes sense.

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About me
After more than 47 years working in private, commercial and National zoos in the capacity of keeper, head keeper and curator Peter Dickinson started to travel. He sold house and all his possessions and hit the road. He has traveled extensively in Turkey, Southern India and much of South East Asia before settling in Thailand. In his travels he has visited well over 200 zoos and writes about these in his blog

Peter earns his living as an independent international zoo consultant, critic and writer. Currently working as Curator of Penguins in Ski Dubai. United Arab Emirates. He describes himself as an itinerant zoo keeper, one time zoo inspector, a dreamer, a traveler, a people watcher, a lover, a thinker, a cosmopolitan, a writer, a hedonist, an explorer, a pantheist, a gastronome, sometime fool, a good friend to some and a pain in the butt to others.

"These are the best days of my life"

Peter Dickinson
Independent International Zoo Consultant